North Lancaster contractor returns to his roots
Jess Hubert has come full circle. Raised on a farm in Québec, the construction contractor recently moved to North Lancaster, where he is eager to begin building for farmers.
Over the last three decades, his career path has taken him to the west coast of Canada, where he has worked on a wide range of projects, including many that have made it to the silver screen.
Mr. Hubert was born on a dairy and potato farm in Ste-Adèle. At the age of 15, he began working as a carpenter’s helper.
He formed TCF Contracting in 1993, when he moved to Surrey, British Columbia. “I went to Vancouver on a holiday. I loved the weather, so I decided to move there,” he recalls.
But he moved back closer to his roots last summer, when he and his wife were attracted to Glengarry. When his father died in Laval last July, “We came back for his funeral and we started driving around this area.”
He and his wife had planned to buy a home in Vancouver. However, those plans were revised when they began to check out eastern Ontario real estate, and real estate prices. “We saw a place in North Lancaster, with 1.1 acres, a 1,200-square-foot steel shop and a 2,800-square-foot house. When the real estate agent told us the price, we did a double-take,” remarks Mr. Hubert.
Local homes are a bargain when one considers that the average home in Vancouver sells for $1 million, Mr. Hubert notes. “We were really happy to move here,” he says.
The couple is now in the process of opening a convenience store in a section of the multi-purpose building, where his wife will have an accounting business.
“I am really looking forward to work in the farm market,” says Mr. Hubert.
His company employs five people who work on job sites, plus his wife and mother-in-law, who do the bookkeeping.
Wide range of expertise
“We do everything – commercial, industrial, residential, renovations, new construction, garages, barns, sheds, houses.” Mr. Hubert is also certified by the Institute of Inspection, Cleaning and Restoration Certification. He has worked on everything from crime scenes to mouldy homes.
Surrey and other B.C. communities have construction challenges that are rarely encountered in this part of the country. “Out there I was doing a lot of seismic proofing, to prepare buildings for a major earthquake.”
The region also offers some unique opportunities. Because Vancouver is such a hot spot for television and movie productions, Mr. Hubert has been hired to create some famous backdrops. “I have worked on shows such as the Highlander TV series, the X Files, the movie Snow Falling on Cedars, Call Of The Wild, Bordertown...It is really fun to be watching TV and I see a wall or a house I built,” he says.